Sunday, January 16, 2011

Ring Card Announcing the Word

Most people would be surprised to learn that I'm self conscious.  They see me give talks, act, lector, lead groups, facilitate classes, teach, and other positions that push me to be "up front."  But what they don't realize is that I don't enjoy doing these jobs in the front (with everybody looking at me).  I push myself to do them mostly because no one else will do it.  Usually, no one else stepped up, volunteered, or agreed to do it.  Sometimes because it's my idea and I don't trust anyone to do what I envision. It's a job I have to do!

I'm rambling.

Let me explain.  When I was a child, every Friday night my Dad would watch the Friday Night Fights, sponsored by Gillette.  (I can still sing their Look Sharp/Be Sharp March, by Mahlon Merrick.)  When a round ended, a young lady would enter the ring, raise a sign high over her head, and sashay around the ring.  She was always scantily clad and wore spiky heels.  Of course, this would always draw a response from the neanderthals .  These ladies are called Ring Card Girls.  They have an important job.  The Ring Card Girls enter the boxing ring between rounds to alert fans as to what round is coming up.

You couldn't get me to do that job even with a gun to my head.  Even in my prime!

What does this have to do with being self-conscious?  Well....I feel like a Ring Card Girl every time I'm the Lector who has to carry the Book of Gospels in procession.

I can't help it.  I just do.

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It's because the Lector has to carry the Book of Gospels high enough for everyone to see.  The Book of Gospels is a sign of Christ's presence in the Liturgy.  It's sacred.  It's so important, that you'll see the priest kiss it.

The instructions for Lectors in procession to the altar, are to hold the Book of Gospels up high enough for all to see.  That's about head level.  The problem with that is, I can't see where I'm going--the Book is eye level.  So I have to raise it above my eyes, and "walk slowly and reverently up the aisle, leaving space between the altar servers and other ministers, ...."

....making me feel like a Ring Card Girl.

But I do it anyway.  God has a gun to my head.

Ha!  You know He doesn't operate that way  -- "free will" et al.

I do it because I feel that it's the least I could do for a God that suffered from much more than a little self consciousness.